18 March 2018
Moscow: 16:41
London: 13:41

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Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the Hermitage Foundation UK reception

Ladies and gentlemen,

It’s a great tradition for us to host Hermitage Foundation UK here every year. It is an honour to meet the people who make such an outstanding contribution to this great museum which was named Best Tourist Destination of Europe last year. We know and appreciate your effort and dedication. And this year a very important and little known part of the Hermitage treasures is on tour at the British Museum – I’m sure you have seen the breath-taking Scythians exhibition there.

This year is also the centenary of the dramatic events of 1917 that changed Russia and the world – and the Hermitage hosted a must-see exhibition, a short film about which you can see today in our library.

One more important highlight for today is the launch of the book – “Natter’s Museum Britannicum British Gem Collections and Collectors of the mid-Eighteenth Century”. It will be presented by Sir John Boardman.

So we have more than one reason to celebrate art tonight. But there is still one more. Let us greet Dr Rosalind Polly Blakesley. She is the renowned specialist in Russian classical painting, author of the award-winning book “The Russian Canvas” and the curator of the highly successful “Russia and the Arts: The Age of Tolstoy and Tchaikovsky” exhibition of the Tretyakov Gallery portraits at the National Portrait Gallery, which became a highlight of The Year of Language and Literature 2016. Today I have the pleasure, on behalf of the President of the Russian Federation to award Dr Blakesley with the Pushkin medal. This is the medal, named after our national poet, awarded for outstanding contribution to culture to Russian and foreign nationals.

Ladies and gentlemen, a round of applause for Dr Blakesley.

I would like to give the floor to the Chairman of the trustees of the Foundation James Dawney who will be followed by Sir John Boardman.



Reception in honour of departing Embassy staff at the Ambassador’s Residence

On 16 March 2018 Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko hosted a reception in honour of the diplomats forced to leave the UK by the hostile decision of the British Government, attended by Embassy’s staff, family members and their friends.


Russian delegation visits UK

On 11-13 March 2018 Deputy Minister of Education and Science of the Russian Federation Grigory Trubnikov visited UK. The visit was dedicated to the successful end of the bilateral Year of Science and Education.


Russian Embassy hosts the concert by Mr Dmitry Masleev

On 12 March the Embassy hosted the private performance by Mr Dmitry Masleev.


Russian Embassy hosts briefing for diplomatic corps

On 5 March Ambassador Dr. Alexander Yakovenko welcomed Ambassadors accredited to London, senior Foreign Office staff, MPs and Lords and representatives of think tanks at a briefing dedicated to the Presidential Address to the Federal Assembly delivered on 1 March.


Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko’s remarks at the Defender of the Fatherland Day reception, 27 February 2018

Your Excellencies, Military Attachés, Ladies and Gentlemen, Today it gives me a great pleasure to welcome you all at this reception. We celebrate the Day of the Russian Armed Forces – probably the most cost-effective military organization on this planet. At least that's what I see from the figures published by the very respectful IISS institution – Russia spends 46 bln. US dollars on defence, whereas UK – 52 bln. dollars, USA – an amazing 600+ bln. and all NATO countries combined – more than 1 trillion dollars. And still even with this absolutely disproportional defence spending Russia manages to maintain an Army which effectively fights terrorism in Syria, protects our borders and sovereignty at home.


Heritage activists honoured on Diplomats' Day

On 9 February 2018, at the reception on the occasion of Diplomats' Day, Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko presented letters of recognition to those who contributed to the commemoration of the 320 anniversary of Peter I's visit to London. Ambassador Yakovenko said:


Embassy celebrates Diplomats’ Day

On 10 February Russia marks the professional holiday of the diplomatic service, established by a Presidential decree in 2002 to commemorate its foundation in 1549. On 9 February the Russian embassy hosted a reception attended by diplomatic corps, local authorities, journalists and distinguished community members. Highlight of the evening was screening of the documentary “Kremlin – sacred heart of Moscow”, presented by its filming team. Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko presented letters of recognition for commemoration of Peter the Great’s 1698 Grand Embassy in Deptford. World famous pianist Yuri Rozum played at the event. Following the tradition, Ambassador Yakovenko laid a wreath to the grave of Ambassador Alexander Benckendorff at the Westminster Cathedral, and members of Embassy staff laid flowers to the graves of Russian Chargés d’Affaires Fr. Iakov (James) Smirnove at Kensal Green Cemetery and Evgeny Sablin at Brompton Cemetery. In the run-up to Diplomats’ Day, Ambassador Yakovenko met with students of University College London and University of East Anglia, and one more Embassy Q&A was hosted by the Durham University.


Meeting with "Glasgow Rangers" FC

On 8 February 2018 Consul General of Russia in Edinburgh Andrey A.Pritsepov received the head of one of the oldest Scottish football clubs "Glasgow Rangers" Scott Steadman and the legendary player of the club William Henderson. They discussed prospects for renewal of cooperation with the Russian clubs, in particular the "Dynamo Moscow" team, with participation of youth and junior teams, coaches and fan associations. They presented an album "Rangers in Russia: The Story of the 1962 Tour" to the Consulate General, which tells about the memorable matches played by Rangers with the teams “Locomotive Moscow”, “Dynamo Tbilisi” and “Dynamo Kiev”.


Presentation of the “Innopolis” special economic zone

On February 1, 2018, the Russian Embassy to UK with support of the Russo-British Chamber of Commerce hosted a presentation of the investing capacity and innovation opportunities offered by the “Innopolis” special economic zone which was created in 2012 in the same-name suburb of Kazan, the capital of the Republic of Tatarstan with the aim to promote information and communication technologies.


Holocaust Remembrance Day marked in London

On 26 January 2018 a ceremony at the Soviet War Memorial near the Imperial War Museum marked the International Holocaust Remembrance Day.

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